Swedes go public with America’s Cup intentions
Published on August 19th, 2014
(August 19, 2014) – When the entry deadline passed on August 8 for the 35th America’s Cup, all that was announced by the organizers was that “a strong line-up of clubs had submitted entries to race”. But who were they?
The only team to have had announced their entry was Team New Zealand on August 7, with the list assumed to also include Artemis Racing (SWE), Ben Ainslie Racing (GBR), Luna Rossa (ITA), and Team France (FRA).
The Swedish team made it official today, publicly stating their intention to compete. Artemis Racing will again challenge alongside Kungliga Svenska Segel Sällskapet (KSSS), the Royal Swedish Yacht Club, for what will be the team’s second campaign following their effort in 2013.
America’s Cup organizers have stated that no entry is officially accepted until completing the verification process to insure they meets the requirements of the Deed and the Protocol, with the approved entries to be introduced in London on September 9.
Along with announcing their campaign, Artemis Racing revealed that Swedish Olympic champions Fredrik Lööf and Max Salminen, as well as America’s Cup veteran Rod Davis, would be joining the team.
Lööf is one of the most successful Swedish sailors of all times and a long-time friend and competitor of Team Manager Iain Percy. With a wealth of experience, he has participated in an incredible six Olympic campaigns, winning a gold medal at the London 2012 Olympics and bronze medals at the 2008 Beijing Olympics in the Star class, and at the Sydney 2000 Olympics in the Finn class. Lööf’s career highlights also include three Finn World Championships, two Star World titles and a third place finish in the 2001-2002 Volvo Ocean Race.
On joining the team Fredrik said “I’ve been fascinated by the way sailing has been evolving over the last few years, with these new foiling boats and incredible TV production. I was really inspired by Artemis’ last campaign and having a Swedish boat on the start line again, and being part of it this time, is very exciting. Winning the America’s Cup and bringing it to Sweden for the first time would be something very special”.
One of the most promising talents in Swedish sailing, Max Salminen, still just 24, struck gold at the London 2012 Olympic Games alongside Fredrik Lööf in the Star class.
Artemis Racing also welcomed Sailing Coach Rod Davis. In his extraordinary America’s Cup career – now his 9th campaign – Davis brings an unparalleled wealth of experience to the team, having covered a variety of roles from bowman to mainsail trimmer, skipper, and more recently coach of Emirates Team New Zealand. Rod won a gold medal in the Soling class at the Los Angeles Olympic Games in 1984, and Olympic silver in the Star class in Barcelona 1992. His track record also includes winning the Admiral’s Cup and the Sardinia Cup several times, as well as seven World Champion titles.
The Team has already amassed an incredible 61 America’s Cup Campaigns between its members, including 14 victories. Team members (including two designers) have competed in 21 Olympic Games, winning 11 medals, including seven Gold medals.
“Where some teams may have one Olympic gold medallist, we have six of them, however the focus is very much on the team, and there is no individual bigger than the group. We are not only in this competition to win the 35th America’s Cup, but to dominate the America’s Cup arena for the next decade.” Said Team Manager and Tactician Iain Percy. “I’m also passionate that Artemis Racing is more than simply winning, it’s about producing a legacy and winning in a certain way”.
Harnessing fresh talent and inspiring younger team members is at the core of Artemis Racing’s new challenge, and the Team launched an internship programme which will give top Swedish students a chance to become directly involved in the key areas that make up a successful America’s Cup Team, spending up to 12 weeks working in the team base in Alameda, CA, USA, across different departments.
Torbjörn Törnqvist, Team Principal of Artemis Racing said: “Sailing is my passion, and I’m very proud to once again represent Sweden in the America’s Cup. Given our experience from the 34th America’s Cup, what the team went through and achieved, we have an incredibly strong culture, a belonging to the team. Building on our core group from the last campaign, we have been able to secure talent across all areas, and I strongly believe that Artemis Racing is a team capable of winning the 35th America’s Cup”.
Content source: Artemis Racing; Photo: Sander van der Borch